Federal Copyright Budget Estimate
Known as Schedules A & B to the Attorney Client Fee and Representation Agreement
Creation is the development of any work, in a fixed, tangible form including the development of a title, which is not protected by copyright, but identifies the work. The creator of the work can be an individual, who is the owner, however, a work created by an individual within the scope of their employment is considered a “work for hire” wherein the employer is the owner.
A copyrightable work covers: literary, dramatic, musical, artistic, motion pictures, screenplays, computer programs, novels, sculptures, songs, fabric designs, photographs, paintings, sculptures, dolls, jewelry, sound recordings, brochures, leaflets, and generally most items that are not solely functional or utilitarian in nature. Copyright protection does not cover any underlying ideas or facts, only the expression in a fixed tangible form. Copyright protection is strongest where the creative content is distinctive and unique and more fiction based versus fact based creations, which have a lower level of protection.
A tangible medium is work that is in a form that may be communicated to another, such as: written down, recorded, books, manuscripts, paintings, discs, and films.
Title Clearance Stage
Once a work has been created, a title may be chosen to identify the work. Depending on the nature of the work the title can have varying importance, for example on a movie a title can be significant for its sales and marketing value and it will be important to make sure that no legal conflicts arise from the use of the title name. Thus a title search can be done to “Clear” the title name to minimize the future infringement claims risk as no one wants to have to change a title halfway through their promotional scheme.
Rights Clearance Stage
This applies if existing copyrights are used as a basis for creating new works, otherwise known as “Derivative” works, with the existing copyright known as an “Underlying” work. This would require a search of who owned what rights to the affected underlying copyrights to enable the seeking of the required permissions, licenses, etc. This type of search also helps prevent fraudulent representations as to ownership of copyright rights. As an example, if someone wanted to make a movie based upon a given book, a search would have to be done to ascertain if prior movie rights to the book had been granted and conversely once a copyright is created the owner would have to decide the nature and granting of derivative rights in their own copyright.
Federal Copyright Registration Protection and maintenance of the copyright
Copyright Office fees only:
Registration-for a basic textual (TX) work $35
Note that other types of works can have slightly higher fees
U.S. copyright prescreen search $105
For registration and renewal data, and a listing of recorded documents for a specific work searching U.S. copyright records.
U.S. full copyright search $615
Covers copyright registrations, renewals, underlying and derivative works, assignment records, and author information looking in U.S. Copyright records, private databases, and online.
U.S. Title Availability Search $555
Exact matches, reversals, plurals, and abbreviations in U.S. copyright records, library of congress records, USPTO records, domain names, and various online records.
The following fees are for attorney work product and are in addition to U.S. Copyright Office and search fees.
Preparation and filing of the following U.S. copyright forms consisting of the following:
Advice in copyright creation, documentation, and protections.
Advice on search options.
Advice on search results.
Completion of the applicable copyright office forms.
Filing of copyright registration. $500
All of the fees quoted are estimates only for budgeting purposes as the complexity of any given copyright varies. The legal fees can be fixed at the time of the Attorney-Client fee and Representation Agreement for a set amount of legal duties. The U.S. Copyright Office fee’s are subject to change beyond our control.
Also other 3rd party service provider fees are subject to change beyond our control. Costs do not include, travel, language translation, and certified copy fees if required. Other incidental, actual out of pocket costs and expenses are per the Attorney-Client fee and Representation Agreement. In addition the legal fees are only up to the first (1st) office action of the U.S. Copyright Office, it is impossible to know at this time if there will be any matters of form or copyrightable subject matter issues causing a rejection to the copyright registration, which will require added time and expense for all parties involved to overcome the copyright rejection.
Also, the Copyright Office will need two copies of what you are desiring a copyright on and we will need one copy for our files, thus three copies will be required, all of these copies should be exactly what you are publishing and selling, in addition you will maximize your statutory damages rights by federally registering your copyright prior to your actual publication date.
Attorney hourly fee $150.00
Estimated copy costs $25.00
Estimated Express Mail per occurrence $25.00